Meet your new exercise prop: baby! As she grows bigger and gets heavier, your workout will progress right along with her, becoming more challenging as you get into increasingly better shape. But the best part about working out with baby? It’s built-in bonding time.
The four exercises here strengthen and tone the lower body—an important area to target for new mommies, given all the sitting we do, whether we’re reading to and playing with baby or simply holding her. Keep baby in a carrier in the front of your body and engage your core throughout the full routine.
I love taking Remi outside in the baby carrier and exercising. We use the park bench to help modify exercises, because when you’re working out with baby, you want to maintain your balance and keep you both safe. If you’re indoors, a stable chair or table can provide an assist.
Ready? Let’s go!
Plié Lunge Pulse
- Begin with feet hip distance apart and legs turned out slightly. Use a chair or table for balance, if needed.
- Bend at knees to lower hips into a grand plié.
- Extend legs to standing while turning to your left leg.
- Bend at knees again to lower into a lunge.
- Extend legs to standing and turn back to the wide leg stance.
- Repeat this plié-lunge combo for 20 sets total.
- Do another 20 sets, but turning to your right for the lunge stance.
- Face a table; then, using it for support, stand up tall, engaging the core.
- Balance on the right leg, while lifting and extending left leg back. Hold, lower with control, then lift it back up again. Do 20 reps.
- Switch sides and do 20 more reps.
Side-Plank Leg Kick
- Start with your right hip next to a sturdy table.
- Lower your right forearm to the table, while wrapping your left arm around baby.
- Step your legs out to a modified side plank, with one foot in front of the other for added stability.
- Hold this for a few counts. Or, if you’re up for a challenge, lift and lower your top leg in controlled movements. Do 10 reps.
- Switch sides and do 10 more reps.
- Use a table or chair to maintain your balance as you bring your heels together, feet and legs slightly turned out.
- Brace your core, then bend at the knees and lower the hips to the point that feels challenging but comfortable on your knees. Hold.
- Press into your feet and extend legs to standing.
- Repeat this plié move 15 times.
- Hold at the bottom of your last plié and pulse for 15 times.
Christine Bullock is a Los Angeles-based fitness and wellness expert who is certified in yoga, pilates, general fitness, and pre- and post-natal fitness. She is also the founder of Evolution20,, a fitness and nutrition program, and co-creator of KAYO and all-natural skincare brand.
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Updated December 2017